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Will Smith honours 'respectable' Fresh Prince co-star

Will Smith has written a tribute to his former Fresh Prince of Bel-Air co-star James Avery, who played Uncle Phil on the hit US comedy.

The cast of Fresh Prince of Bel-Air onstage at the BET Awards in 2005. Credit: Reuters

Addressing the 68-year-old actor's death on New Year's Eve publicly for the first time, Smith wrote on Facebook: "Some of my greatest lessons in Acting, Living and being a respectable human being came through James Avery. Every young man needs an Uncle Phil. Rest in Peace."

He posted a 2011 picture of himself with the Fresh Prince cast, which he said showed the last time he and his TV uncle were together.

The show, which ran for six years and launched Smith's career, saw him playing wayward Will, a streetwise Philadelphia teen who moved in with his strait-laced Californian relatives to stay out of trouble.

Read: Alfonso Ribeiro tweets news of James Avery's death

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Will Smith meets students in Tulse Hill

The Hollywood star - famous for roles in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and Men in Black - met students at St Martin-in-the-Fields High School for Girls in Tulse Hill, doing a question and answer session and signing autographs.

Students in Tulse Hill had no idea that Will Smith would be dropping in on them. Credit: St Martin-in-the-Fields High School for Girls
He was being given a tour of south London by Labour MP Chuka Umunna. Credit: St Martin-in-the-Fields High School for Girls
The actor had said that he wanted to see the "real London". Credit: St Martin-in-the-Fields High School for Girls
Will Smith answered questions from students. Credit: St Martin-in-the-Fields High School for Girls
He seemed to enjoy his visit. Credit: St Martin-in-the-Fields High School for Girls
The star met the head girl and her deputies. Credit: St Martin-in-the-Fields High School for Girls
Students pose with their autographs. Credit: St Martin-in-the-Fields High School for Girls

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Chuka Umunna tweets about Will Smith visit

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Great to show Will Smith around Brixton this morning with @jowellt. More to follow

Chuka_umunna-5d_normal

Pupils at St Martins, many of whom are my constituents, had no idea Will Smith was coming to school today. Incredible reception!

Chuka_umunna-5d_normal

Great to show off our awesome #Lambeth - Will wanted to see "real" London and it doesn't get more real than Lambeth!

London

Hollywood star Will Smith tours Lambeth

Labour MP Chuka Umunna has given Will Smith a tour of Lambeth today, saying that the Hollywood star wanted to see the "real London".

The pair called into a music venue and a coffee shop in Brixton before taking questions from students at St Martin-in-the-Fields High School for Girls in Tulse Hill.

Chuka Umunna and Will Smith take questions from pupils at a school in Tulse Hill. Credit: Twitter/@ChukaUmunna
Will Smith in Brixton with Chuka Umunna and Tessa Jowell. Credit: Twitter/@KaeKurd
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